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How to Restore the Shape of a Floppy Hat

by Mercedes Valladares, studioD

Though wearing oversized hats are generally attention-grabbing fashion statements, a floppy hat will get you noticed as soon as you enter the room. This wide brimmed, relaxed, crown-fitting hat style is an invaluable summer accessory keeping you stylish while shielding you from the harsh sun. Often hand-woven and made of eco-friendly raffia, the easy care floppy style can be rolled up for packing. Though this accessory appears to have an unstructured pattern and make, the shape around the crown and brim are often lost over time. Reshape this style with a few care tips and restore your floppy hat to its original glory.

Fill a spray bottle with water and spray a small amount of water on the outer shell of the hat to dampen. Do not get the hat soaking wet.

Pour water in your steam iron according to your brand's instructions and set to a low or medium heat setting.

Glide the tip of the iron lightly in a back-and-forth motion inside of the hat on your ironing board. Glide the tip lightly over the inside of the brim in the same motion pattern as the hat slowly begins to reshape.

Press the steam button and pass in a back-and-forth motion, holding the iron approximately 5 to 6 inches away from the fabric surface. This step removes any notable creases from rolling or packing the hat. Alternate between steaming and ironing until the surface is smooth.

Place the floppy hat on a display head to air dry as it reshapes. Make sure to keep it away from direct sunlight to avoid any discoloration to the raffia. If you do not have a display hat, roll a soft terry towel and insert it into the crown.

Items you will need
  •  Spray bottle
  •  Steam iron
  •  Ironing board
  •  Display head
  •  Terry towel (optional)


  • Though raffia can naturally repel water, it is not a water-resistant textile. If you wet the hat outdoors, roll a towel and insert it into the crown. As the floppy hat air dries, hold the iron 5 to 6 inches away from the outer fabric shell and alternate between steaming and pressing the hat lightly on your ironing board. Continue to alternate until it reshapes the structure of the floppy hat.

About the Author

Mercedes Valladares is the founder of M721Organics and has been an independent designer for over 15 years. Her work experience commenced during college with manufacturers based in New York and Hong Kong. Her education includes LIM College, International Fine Arts College and design certification from the Paris Fashion Institute. She produces eco-crafting videos and writes recycling articles online.

Photo Credits

  • Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images